Today our expert guest is Geoff Thatcher, the founder and CCO at Creative Principles. He’s had a long career creating brand experiences, vision centers, museums, theme parks, and live events before he launched his own experience design firm in 2017. His eclectic background always delivers a fresh perspective and his experience includes everything from the grand opening of the Warner Bros. World Abu Dhabi to the renovated American Airlines Museum in Texas.
Geoff is also a writer and teacher. He’s ghostwritten books, blogs, and even facilitated a communication workshop for the CIA, and his new book “The CEO’s Time Machine” is a fictionalized story inspired by real-world events and business lessons.
How do you be creative? Creativity is about making connections. Part of making connections is filling your life with the stimuli and inputs that will allow you to make those connections. The more you read, watch, and experience, the more you have to draw your inspiration from and make connections between things that are less obvious.
You also need to know what style of creative you are: a hermit creative or a studio creative. Hermit creatives thrive on solitude and need to be alone to create, while studio creatives need to be able to bounce ideas off of others and collaborate. Even though Geoff is an extrovert, he still is at his most creative when he is by himself.
The lesson to be gleaned from “The CEO’s Time Machine” is that a business’s decisions rely as much on the past as they do the future. Even if you know what happened in the past, and even if you could see into the future, you would still have to make the decision to make a decision today. Too many companies ignore their past instead of learning and growing from it. And at any company, the future of that company is already there if you look for it — the people and voices that are already there.
To avoid making those mistakes, it’s important to listen to a mantra from Bruce Weindruch of the History Factory: “Start with the future and work back.” Think of where you want to be, and then look back into your past and look at the milestones that inform where you actually want to go in the future.
Ultimately, the future is ours to create. If we can use our creativity to see the connections between the possibilities of the past and the future, we can make it happen.
The Biggest Helping: Today’s Most Important Takeaway
“Don’t be afraid to share your idea. Don’t be afraid. People will laugh, people will giggle, that’s okay. Don’t be afraid to share your ideas because one of those ideas just might change the world.”
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